The 2023 NHL Draft Lottery is in the rearview mirror, and we finally have more clarity regarding the draft order. As such, it is time for our second 2023 NHL Mock Draft.

Our first 2023 NHL Mock Draft came back in March on the heels of the NHL Draft Lottery date announcement. This mock covers all 32 first-round picks scheduled to be made at the NHL Draft in late June.

We know who won the Connor Bedard sweepstakes, and we likely know the team who will select standout Michigan forward Adam Fantilli. What about the rest of the first round? With no further ado, here is our second 2023 NHL Mock Draft.

Note: Picks 17 to 32 are not officially assigned. This mock utilizes the order provided by Tankathon as of Tuesday night to assign those picks.

1) Chicago Blackhawks: Connor Bedard, C, Regina Pats (WHL)

Claims of rigging aside, this is a huge development in the rebuild for the Chicago Blackhawks. They get a legitimate franchise-altering talent in Bedard to potentially accelerate their rebuild.

Bedard scored 71 goals with the Regina Pats this past season in the Western Hockey League. He also set Canadian national team records at the IIHF World Juniors at the beginning of the year. His potential is astronomical. Chicago has their next Jonathan Toews.

2) Anaheim Ducks: Adam Fantilli, C, Michigan (NCAA)

Fantilli is not a “consolation prize” to Bedard, in my opinion. The Michigan product is very much an elite prospect in his own right, and he joins an already outstanding core of young forwards in Southern California.

Fantilli capped off an impressive freshman season in Ann Arbor by winning the Hobey Baker Award as the best men's college player. He should play in Anaheim's top six for at least 10 years.

3) Columbus Blue Jackets: Leo Carlsson, C, Orebro HK (SHL)

This is where the draft really begins. There is a lot of intrigue with this pick, as Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen is not afraid to go off the board.

However, I don't see that happening here. For all the talk about Will Smith, Carlsson is a better prospect. He has higher upside, and like the two going before him, can be a legitimate elite center in the NHL.

4) San Jose Sharks: Will Smith, C, US National Team Development Program (USNTDP)

This is the first surprise of the mock as the San Jose Sharks pass on Russian phenom Matvei Michkov in favor of Will Smith. The American center has risen up draft boards in recent months, and could certainly go in the top five.

Smith was the USNTDP's top-line center this season. He brings tremendous puck skills and offensive creativity beyond his years. He certainly has his flaws, but the positives outweigh the negatives here.

5) Montreal Canadiens: Ryan Leonard, LW, USNTDP

Another surprise as the Montreal Canadiens decide against Michkov and grab Ryan Leonard, a high-scoring American winger. He also starred on the USNTDP's top line this season alongside Smith.

Leonard is a threat as both a goal-scorer and a playmaker. He also shows no fear of physical play despite his average size compared to more physical players. A major oversight in our first Mock Draft, Leonard lands in the top five here.

6) Arizona Coyotes: Matvei Michkov, RW, HK Sochi (KHL)

Finally, Michkov's slide ends here with the Arizona Coyotes. The Coyotes have another pick later in the top 15, so they can take the risk of drafting the Russian phenom here.

Michkov is, undoubtedly, the best Russian draft prospect since Alex Ovechkin. The Coyotes are fine with waiting for Michkov's KHL contract to expire, as it could coincide with the opening of their new arena.

7) Philadelphia Flyers: Nate Danielson, C, Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)

An off-the-board pick to some, I am very high on Danielson's upside. And he just fits what Philadelphia Flyers head coach John Tortorella wants out of his players.

Danielson is a complete, two-way center who plays hard at both ends of the ice. He can center the top line of your power play while also killing off penalties in the most dire situations. He has all the markings of an excellent top-line center.

8) Washington Capitals: David Reinbacher, D, Kloten (NLA)

Reinbacher began the season as a bit of an unknown. Now, it'd be shocking to see the Austrian fall out of the top 10. He is the best defenseman in this class, and there is a chance he goes higher than this on draft night.

The last NLA player to enter the NHL Draft with the type of production Reinbacher gave to his team, that player went first overall. It was Auston Matthews, and we all know how he turned out. Reinbacher is obviously a different player, but he could turn out to be an elite defenseman all the same.

9) Detroit Red Wings: Axel Sandin Pellikka, D, Skelleftea (SHL)

The Red Wings have great defensive prospects in their system, but no top right-shot defenseman. They can get their pick of offensive producers later on, but Sandin Pellikka is too good to pass up here.

Sandin Pellikka has the ability to control all three zones when he's on top of his game. He's stout defensively with a bit of offensive flair, although he does lack a bit of creativity offensively. In any event, Sandin Pellikka can become a top-four defenseman in the NHL, and Detroit continues stacking their blueline.

10) St. Louis Blues: Zach Benson, C/W, Winnipeg Ice (WHL)

Benson could very well go higher than this, but the Blues certainly hope he doesn't. The Winnipeg Ice star brings the ability to both play down the middle and along the wing, giving St. Louis versatility in their lineup decisions.

Benson is a highly creative player in the offensive zone. He's helped the Ice make the WHL Playoff Finals this season after putting up 98 points in 60 games. A potential replacement for the previously traded Vladimir Tarasenko.

11) Vancouver Canucks: Dalibor Dvorsky, C, AIK (HockeyAllsvenskan)

Vancouver needs high-end prospect depth in the worst way. In Dvorsky, they are getting just that. Another piece to add to impressive young players such as Quinn Hughes and Elias Pettersson.

Dvorsky is a highly dangerous player inside the offensive zone. His wrist shot is filthy, and he is able to evade would-be defenders attempting to hit him. He is more of a goal scorer than a playmaker, but brings 100% effort every shift no matter the situation.

12) Arizona Coyotes (via Ottawa Senators): Oliver Moore, C, USNTDP

The Coyotes selected Michkov with their first pick, and with this pick, they select their potential future star center. And a player who could very well go before this selection on draft night.

Moore has a lot of fans around hockey circles, and it's easy to see why. He is considered the best skater in the draft and is a very hard competitor defensively. His offensive skills need a bit of work, but there is a lot to like about the Minnesota commit.

13) Buffalo Sabres: Eduard Sale, LW, Brno (Czech Extraliga)

Sale's stock has fallen a bit since our NHL Mock Draft in March. However, he still brings an enticing skill set that should still help him go within this 10-20 range of the first round.

Teams around the league will like his combination of size, skating ability, and offensive instincts. He is an excellent passer with a good-but-not-great shot. Sale has the potential to be a top-six winger in the NHL and could jump to North America next season to play junior hockey with the OHL's Barrie Colts.

14) Pittsburgh Penguins: Brayden Yager, C, Moose Jaw Warriors (WHL)

The Pittsburgh Penguins are in unfamiliar territory following their failure to make the playoffs for the first time in 16 years. They have the worst prospect pool in the NHL, and this is a great way for them to replenish their depth.

Yager plays with a lot of speed and energy any time he is on the ice. He isn't an incredibly physical player, but he wins his battles and has an offensive upside the Penguins would covet. The Warriors star could be next in line after Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin retire.

15) Nashville Predators: Dmitriy Simashev, D, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl (KHL)

The Nashville Predators will host the draft, so extra pressure could be on them here. This is a pick Predators fans can certainly be happy with as the David Poile era officially ends this summer.

Simashev is a big defenseman, standing six-foot-four inches tall. He skates very well for his size and plays an impressive two-way game. He made Yaroslavl's KHL team as a 17-year-old before being sent to Russia's junior team this past season. He has all the markings of a top-pairing defenseman in the right situation.

16) Calgary Flames: Andrew Cristall, LW, Kelowna Rockets (WHL)

As I said in our first NHL Mock Draft, Cristall is the most polarizing prospect in this draft. Which is crazy given just how divisive NHL Draft rankings are, to begin with. In any case, the Flames take the plunge on the Rockets star here.

Cristall profiles as more of a playmaker than a goal scorer. He is creative and crafty in the offensive zone who can use even the smallest amount of space to generate scoring chances. He is undersized, but NHL teams shouldn't be scared of that with this player.

17) Montreal Canadiens (via Florida Panthers): Matthew Wood, LW, UConn (NCAA)

Wood has enjoyed productive seasons at UConn and has risen up draft boards as of late. Montreal did select a winger earlier in this mock but decide to double-dip with this selection.

Wood is a highly skilled offensive player. He brings high IQ in the offensive zone to pair with an excellent wrist shot and one-time. There are concerns regarding his effort and compete level, but Wood still brings top-six potential to the table.

18) Detroit Red Wings (via Vancouver Canucks/New York Islanders): Bradley Nadeau, C, Penticton Vees (BCHL)

Nadeau's stock has risen a bit, and he is one of my favorite players in the draft. It is off the board, but the Red Wings need gifted offensive players, and that's exactly what Nadeau is.

He was highly productive in the BCHL, scoring 113 points in 54 games. He has a fantastic wrist shot and can pick out corners like pure NHL snipers do on a regular basis. Nadeau is a bit of a project defensively, but he brings versatility to play down the middle or on the wing. And he is absolutely dynamic in the offensive zone.

19) Winnipeg Jets: Tom Willander, D, Rogle BK (SHL)

Willander has seen his stock rise in recent months and should hear his name called in the first round as things stand. The Jets certainly stand to add to their blueline depth after using their last four first-round picks on forwards.

He plays a two-way game, though he doesn't profile as a premier point producer. Willander is one of the best skaters in the draft, which helps him close in on body checks and play quality defense. He could slot into Winnipeg's top four in the future.

20) Chicago Blackhawks (via Tampa Bay Lightning): Samuel Honzek, C/W, Vancouver Giants (WHL)

Honzek brings positional versatility with him to Chicago, giving them options after selecting Connor Bedard. In Honzek, the Blackhawks are getting a player with experience in all situations on the ice.

He ran Vancouver's power play from the wing in the WHL. He likely doesn't have that same role in the NHL, but he can play on the man advantage while also killing penalties. Honzek is a two-way player no matter the position he plays.

21) Seattle Kraken: Colby Barlow, LW, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)

Barlow very well could go before this selection, but he falls a bit here. The Seattle Kraken need depth at left wing in their prospect pool and are very happy to stop Barlow's fall right here.

Barlow is a well-rounded winger but shines in goal-scoring and shot creation. He scored 30 goals in the OHL as a 16-year-old. The Owen Sound star also brings a bit of physicality and the ability to kill penalties to whichever team drafts him at the NHL Draft.

22) Minnesota Wild: Quentin Musty, LW, Sudbury Wolves (OHL)

The Minnesota Wild also could stand to improve their winger depth in this draft. In Musty, they get a former number-one overall pick in the OHL Draft to add to their prospect pool.

Musty is certainly a talented player in the offensive zone. He is skilled with the puck on his stick, and has an impressive creative flair about him as well. He is a project defensively, but his scoring output should still carve out a top-six role for him.

23) Columbus Blue Jackets (via Los Angeles Kings): Daniil But, LW, Lokomotiv Yaroslavl (KHL)

But's stock has fallen since our first NHL Mock Draft in March. However, since the Columbus Blue Jackets added a center with their first pick, they can take a chance on the Yaroslavl star here.

But is a big player, standing six-foot-five inches. He got off to a white-hot start in Russia's minor league, scoring 11 goals in his first 15 games. But brings a size and skill combination we rarely see in the NHL. He needs refinement, but he could become a point-producing two-way winger at the next level.

24) New York Rangers: Gavin Brindley, C/W, Michigan (NCAA)

As it stands, the New York Rangers will have their own pick in the 2023 NHL Draft. However, they owe the St. Louis Blues the lower of this pick and the pick they acquired from the Dallas Stars prior to the season. Keep that in mind.

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For now, the Rangers use their pick on Gavin Brindley. Brindley is an excellent skater and has some of the best work ethic in this draft. He doesn't take plays off and he is not afraid to crash the net if the situation calls for it. Where he plays is a question, but there is a lot to like regardless.

25) Nashville Predators (via Edmonton Oilers): Riley Heidt, C, Prince George Cougars (WHL)

Heidt was another player we overlooked in our last NHL Mock Draft back in March. The Nashville Predators add to their center depth by selecting an incredibly dependable player.

Heidt was Prince George's go-to center for important faceoffs this year. He is not afraid to get into physical situations and ups his intensity as the game goes along. Heidt is much more impressive offensively than his numbers show, as well.

26) San Jose Sharks (via New Jersey Devils): Otto Stenberg, C/W, Frolunda HC (SHL)

Stenberg is another prospect in this draft who doesn't have clarity as to where he'll play in the NHL. He can play center, but likely profiles better as a winger a the next level.

In any event, Stenberg's stock has risen since our last NHL Mock Draft, where we also had him as a late first-round pick. He has the hockey senses to produce well offensively in the NHL. And though he isn't the biggest player, he gives it his all every shift and will not shy away from contact.

27) Colorado Avalanche: Ethan Gauthier, RW, Sherbrooke Phoenix (QMJHL)

Gauthier didn't post massive offensive numbers this season. However, he still played a vital role in one of the QMJHL's best teams in 2022-23.

Gauthier is skilled offensively, beating defenders in one-on-one situations and creating chances for his linemates. He is a smaller player, but he is also a pure pest on the ice. He is one of those players you hate to play against, but you love when he dons your team's sweater.

28) Toronto Maple Leafs (via Washington Capitals/Boston Bruins): Beau Akey, D, Barrie Colts (OHL)

I was high on Akey back in March, and that continues here. I had the opportunity to see this player in person back in April when the Barrie Colts defeated the Hamilton Bulldogs in Game 6 of the first round of the OHL Playoffs.

Akey scored a goal in that game to help lead a comeback from 3-0 down. He moved the puck well in the offensive zone and held his own defensively against a hungry and hard-nosed Bulldogs team.

Akey profiles as an offensive defenseman in the NHL no question. However, I think there's upside with him defensively. He will never be the best defensive defenseman, but his offensive production could land him a spot as powerplay quarterback in the NHL.

29) St. Louis Blues (via New York Rangers/Dallas Stars): Calum Ritchie, C, Oshawa Generals (OHL)

The St. Louis Blues are up with the first of back-to-back picks, and they take an intriguing center that also could go before this selection on draft night in June.

Ritchie produced at a point-per-game pace for Oshawa this year. He brings a great combination of size, skating ability, and puckhandling that teams love. Ritchie does have stretches of inconsistency, but there is enough to like about him to keep him in the first round.

30) St. Louis Blues (via Toronto Maple Leafs): Theo Lindstein, D, Brynas IF (HockeyAllsvenskan)

Lindstein is another player whose stock has risen over the last few months. After going with forwards in their first two selections, the Blues end an impressive first round with blueline depth.

Lindstein possesses high hockey IQ and defends well in all areas. He is also a solid puck distributor who can provide some scoring from the point. You can play Lindstein in any situation and breathe easier with him on the ice.

31) Vegas Golden Knights: Jayden Perron, RW, Chicago Steel (USHL)

Perron is an interesting player here in the back half of the first round. The Vegas Golden Knights traded another first-round prospect back in March, so they'll certainly want to hit on this one.

Perron produced at a point-per-game pace for the Chicago Steel in the USHL. He possesses a hard and accurate shot that makes him a threat in even-strength situations and on the power play. Perron can also kill penalties in a pinch.

32) Carolina Hurricanes: Kasper Halltunen, RW, HIFK (Liiga)

To round out our second NHL Mock Draft, the Carolina Hurricanes select a winger who has also seen his stock rise since March. Halltunen very well could hear his name called before this in June.

Halltunen brings size and offensive ability that should translate well to the NHL. He has a fantastic shot with an excellent release, and he has a wicked one-timer that is especially effective on the power play. Halltunen is not the most aggressive player, nor the most physical. However, the offensive upside makes him worth the selection here.